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  1. #11
    Ole
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marco Gilardetti
    I seem to disagree with all other posters. I find it extremely useful expecially in macrophotography, when you want to adjust camera's height in regard to the subject precisely (most of the times it's a question of millimeters)...
    For millimeter adjustments, I'll use camera movements...
    -- Ole Tjugen, Luddite Elitist
    Norway

  2. #12
    Dave Parker's Avatar
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    All of my tripods have columns, but rarely do I ever use them, I shoot alot of wildlife photos with 35mm which involves large heavy lenses(600mm f4, 400mmf/2.8) if you raise the center on these lenses it becomes a sail in the slightest breeze and makes it very difficult to get sharp pictures, when shooting LF 4x5, 8x10 I have modified one of my tripods to have the center removed and I use a solid plate to mount the cameras to, giving my maximum stability.

    R.

  3. #13

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    Centre columns are convenient, there's no doubt, but they add a LOT of weight and do nothing for stability/vibration reduction when they are extended. Geared centre columns are a snare and a delusion on anything except big, heavy tripods because they add even more weight.

    Most of my tripods (I have about a dozen) have centre columns, but only two are geared (Gandolfi, 6 kg, and Linhof, 11 kg) and two of my favourites don't have centre columns.

    Cheers,

    Roger

  4. #14
    cdholden's Avatar
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    I've had a Bogen 3021 with a center column... didn't like it much. It seemed loose and wouldn't tighten completely. My current 3046 has a geared center column and I love it. Yes, it is heavy. It's also solid and holds my 8x10 without a grunt or groan. If I need to raise it, I crank it up, then tighten the friction knob to secure it... plus there's a safety lever that keeps the column from dropping unless you want it to. I recently changed ball leveler and fluid head to a Bogen 405 geared 3 way head. I love it. No need for worrying about surprises. Every move is controlled. The only thing I have to worry about is finding time away from work to use it.
    Chris

  5. #15
    Mike Kovacs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ole
    For millimeter adjustments, I'll use camera movements...
    You're posting the the wrong forum

    Seriously though, in macrophotography, using shift in lieu of changing the camera position does not always solve the main problem: changing the camera viewpoint to include/exclude desired/undesired background features. I spend as much time looking behind the subject for a macro shot as I do on the subject.
    If it says Zeiss or Rollei, the answer is YES!
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  6. #16

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    I never use the center column and it introduces vibration to your camera. My last Gitzo I went out of my way to remove the center column and replace it with a Kirk tripod base.
    See: http://www.kirkphoto.com/tripodaccess.html#FP100200

    Most of the Gitzo high end line don't even come with a center column.

  7. #17
    Ole
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Kovacs
    You're posting the the wrong forum
    No, I'm not.

    For macro photography in MF I would use my LF camera with a rollfilm back. Change the viewpoint with front rise and shift, then frame with back movements. Far easier than moving the tripod, and a lot easier than using extension tubes on a Bronica.
    -- Ole Tjugen, Luddite Elitist
    Norway

  8. #18

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    I have an old tiltall and use the center column some and feel comfortable using it with Nikon and Blad.

    I have a Bogen 3221W and will NOT use it's center column, not stable enough.

    Mike

  9. #19
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    Manfrottos with their lever leg release are easy to adjust without a centre column. I extend the bottom section fully and lock it and the top section to the approximate height I want. Releasing one or more of the top section's levers allows me to push the tripod down to the level I want - the friction of the legs in their splayed position prevents sudden downward movement...

    95% of my photography is landscape so this works for me and gives me the rigidity I want without having the camera swaying about on top of an extended column. For closeup this will probably not give the precision required in which case I suspect keeping the column as low as possible combined with a macro focusing stage would be the preferred option if you do a lot of macro.

    Cheers, Bob.

  10. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ole
    No, I'm not.

    For macro photography in MF I would use my LF camera with a rollfilm back. Change the viewpoint with front rise and shift, then frame with back movements. Far easier than moving the tripod, and a lot easier than using extension tubes on a Bronica.
    What's wrong with tubes? Even get TTL flash. OTOH why does an empty tube sell for more then the macro lens?

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